Tonight I browned some ground beef with onion and two cloves of fresh garlic, then drained off the fat. Meanwhile, I cooked some brown rice. I popped open a can of fire roasted tomatoes, drained them and added them to the pan along with my spices. I like things hot, so I added a few dashes of crushed red pepper, italian seasoning and salt and pepper. I got some shredded cheese out of the fridge, added about a 1/4 of a cup to my rice and beef mixture and stirred it all together. I usually hit it with a little red wine, but I was out tonight, so I just went with it. I gave it a little taste, determined it was good to go and then proceeded with stuffing the cored peppers. Once stuffed, I topped them with a little more cheese (you can never have too much cheese), then alternately put the lids back on top and drizzled them with some extra virgin olive oil–that’s what gives them that charred looked when they come out of the oven. I put the peppers in a casserole dish, then poured some chicken stock in the bottom of the dish to keep everything moist during the cooking process. I roasted the peppers at 425 degrees for 25 minutes. While they were in the oven, I cleaned up the kitchen and made a quick tossed salad to round out the meal.
Not too shabby for a weeknight dinner, eh?
Some Kinda Good Stuffed Peppers
- 1 Pound Lean Ground Beef
- 1 Medium Onion, Chopped
- 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
- 2 Fresh Tomatoes, Chopped or 1 (14 oz) can Diced Fire Roasted Tomatoes
- 1 Cup Brown Rice, cooked
- 4 Bell Peppers, any color
- Salt and Pepper
- 2 Tablespoons Herbs de Provence
- 1 Tablespoon Red Pepper Flakes
- 1/2 cup Dried Cranberries, optional
- 1/2 cup pecans, optional
- 1 Cup Shredded Cheddar, divided
- Beef or Chicken Broth
- Olive oil for drizzling
Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. Cook rice according to package directions. Set aside. In a large skillet, brown onion and ground beef together until meat is no longer pink. Add garlic, stirring for about 30 seconds. Add fresh tomatoes and stir to combine. Season well with salt, pepper, herbs de Provence and red pepper flakes. Stir in a 1/2 cup of cheese and stir until melted. Add in pecans and cranberries if using, and stir to combine. (This is a nice variation in the fall). Combine rice with meat mixture.
Slice the tops off of each bell pepper carefully, leaving stem in tact. Set lids aside. Remove seeds and insides, so that the pepper is cleaned out. If peppers are wobbly, trim the bottoms slightly by slicing off the rounded edges, creating a flat spot for the pepper to stand upright when placed in a casserole dish. In a medium casserole dish, place the bell peppers. Fill each pepper with a heaping amount of filling. Top each pepper with remaining cheese, then place each top on each bell pepper. Drizzle each pepper with olive oil. Add about 1/2 inch of beef broth to the bottom of the dish. Bake for 25 minutes, or until tops have browned slightly and peppers are tender.
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Georgia native Rebekah Faulk Lingenfelser is a freelance writer, entertainer and food enthusiast who writes and speaks about her love of good food and the Coastal South. A Food Network Star finalist, Rebekah is the longtime Statesboro Herald food columnist and host of SKG-TV on YouTube. She graduated from Georgia Southern University, and also attended Savannah Technical College’s Culinary Institute of Savannah. To learn more, connect with Some Kinda Good on social media, or visit RebekahLingenfelser.com.